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Enjoy an indulgent romantic holiday in Macao

Macao for couples

From delectable dining and designer shopping to sensational shows and stellar sightseeing, Macao ticks all the boxes for a fun, romantic and active holiday with your partner. You can discover the world's most lavish and exuberant casinos, taste unique fusion food prepared by Michelin-starred chefs and stroll the atmospheric streets of the UNESCO-listed colonial heritage centre.

Couples can also gaze out on a myriad of romantic vistas from the top of Macao Tower, lofty Guia Hill or the world's only figure-8 observation wheel on the Vegas-style Cotai Strip. For seclusion and relaxation there's also a quieter side to Macao where you can enjoy leisurely activities in natural surroundings and a subtropical climate.

As one of the wealthiest enclaves in the world, Macao also has a dazzling range of hotels for couples. Pick from smart city hotels with jaw-dropping views close to the sights of central Macau; impossibly lavish casino resorts in Macau's entertainment epicentre of the Cotai; or deluxe sanctuaries with sumptuous spas tucked away from the action.

Fun and romantic things to see and do

There are some truly one-off and exciting experiences to share in Macao. Start by scaling the cloud-skimming heights of Macao Tower and enjoy an evening meal at the revolving restaurant, with 360-degree views of the dramatic illuminated skyline. Adventurous couples may like to get their adrenalin pumping with a Sky Walk or bungee jump - both experiences are run by a company with an impeccable safety record and standards.

Macao is dotted with high green hillocks, and one of the best all-round experiences in Macao is to take the cable car up Guia Hill to enjoy the city vistas before exploring the historic Guia Lighthouse and the Portuguese fortress that once stood watch over the water. If history is high on your agenda, Macao will not disappoint with its UNESCO-listed centre and Sino-Portuguese heritage. The area around Senado Square, which looks as if it has been lifted straight out of a Portuguese town, is perfect for a romantic stroll. Stop to sample local food at the famous bakeries and head for the picturesque ruins of St Paul's for a photo call or two. Standing for centuries on the eastern edge of Macao greeting visitors arriving by boat, the Taoist A-Ma Temple is an atmospheric highlight of any sightseeing tour.

To taste Macao's gastronomic delights don't miss a trip to Antonio's restaurant where the Michelin-starred chef serves up Portuguese delicacies with an oriental twist. On Taipa Island, head for the aptly-named Food Street lined with an array of restaurants and eateries. While you are in the area, the Taipa Houses Museum showcasing the preserved colonial architecture of the island, is well worth a visit. And for a decadent treat, stop off at a branch of Lord Stow's Bakery on quaint Coloane Island or in the glamorous Venetian Resort in Cotai.

If you are exploring the Venetian Resort in the lively Cotai area between Taipa and Coloane, you will probably need a floor plan as this is the biggest building in the entire world. Incorporating the globe's largest casino, the resort has a Venetian-themed luxury shopping centre with an endless line of designer names, and a canal network offering romantic gondola rides with the occasional serenade. Shopaholics will also want to check out the themed Fisherman's Wharf, the premium stores along the Boulevard of City of Dreams' and Ponte 16 among other retail and entertainment destinations. Hotel complexes such as the Wynn Macao and Four Seasons also have their own luxury malls.

Couples looking to hit the high-rollers have a stellar array of casinos to choose from in Central Macao and especially along the Cotai Strip. Aside from the fabulous Venetian, the floating casino is a one-off experience, while the sheer scale and opulence of StarWorld or the Grand Lisboa will all take your breath away. If you and your partner like fireworks, then be sure to visit Macao in September during the two-week long Macao International Fireworks Contest where you can see the brightest and the best displays lighting up the sky every night.

Alternatively, head to verdant Coloane Island in the far south for laid-back beaches and a sleepy colonial village atmosphere. Here you can enjoy gentle hikes in the undulating natural park and soak in the subtropical climate at 4km-long Hac Sa (Black Sand) beach, which is actually a mix of dark and pale sand. You can find watersports on offer too, as well as a range of other leisurely activities such as golf at the local landscaped course, horse riding and even fishing. For a change of scenery, take a day trip to the nearby city of Hong Kong via the regular ferry service from Macau's maritime port to Kowloon harbour.

Show-stopping hotels and luxury retreats

Jetting off on holiday is a great way for couples to indulge in luxurious experiences and grab some quality time together. Choosing a stylish and romantic hotel is a huge part of it. At the high end of the scale, Macao has a great selection of accommodation options for couples, from the sumptuous and seductive Mandarin Oriental Macau to the chic and serene Banyan Tree Macau.

The Sofitel at Ponte 16, overlooking Macao's inner harbour, is the ideal place to stay for couples who want a five-star integrated casino-entertainment resort with a romantic French vibe just a stone's throw from Macao's historic quarter. If you are looking for luxurious boutique accommodation with heritage and character, the exclusive 12-suite Pousada de Sao Tiago is the perfect choice. At the south-west corner of Macao peninsula, it's housed in a converted 17th-century Portuguese fortress with lots of its original features.

Among Macao's many luxury gaming resorts, the record-breaking Venetian Hotel and Resort is the top spot on the Cotai Strip, while the deluxe StarWorld Resort boasts Michelin-starred dining, plush rooms and a fabulous casino right in the heart of Macau Peninsula's entertainment district.

Travellers can choose from plenty of non-gaming hotels as well. The Royal Macau features affordable luxury and a pool in the lovely St Lazarus quarter, close to the heritage sights. The Conrad Hotel offers its signature style in a peaceful location behind the Cotai Strip, while couples looking for a more secluded setting might prefer to stay at the Pousada de Coloane Beach Hotel and Restaurant. Popular with couples, it's a luxury bolthole beside Coloane Island's Cheoc-Van beach and it was once a Portuguese colonial manor house. Although it feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of Macao, it's still within easy reach of the region's cultural and entertainment highlights.

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